[Dovecot] Mailbox Hashing

Kyle Wheeler kyle-dovecot at memoryhole.net
Fri Nov 14 21:03:52 EET 2008

On Friday, November 14 at 11:51 AM, quoth Charles Marcus:
>> <shrug> I'm not saying that's *true*, I'm just saying I've heard 
>> that a lot...
> Thats called spreading FUD.

No, it's not. FUD would be "a strategic attempt to influence public 
opinion by disseminating negative (and vague) information."

I am not trying to influence public opinion, I'm reporting existing 
public opinion. The consensus opinion of the sysadmins I trust most 
highly is that ReiserFS is still relatively experimental and has not 
yet earned their trust---several of them have been bitten by ReiserFS 
bugs on their development machines (read: data loss due to 
unrecoverable filesystem corruption). That said, their problems were 
several years ago. Unfortunately, in the world of filesystem 
reliability, trust comes slowly once lost (check out how recently 
ReiserFS has been fixing quota-related problems, including ACL 

In any case, I have no strategic purpose here. I have no interest or 
stake in any filesystem taking over the world. If ReiserFS is 
extremely stable and extremely reliable, then that's awesome, but it 
does have a bit of a reputation problem. Denying that it has a 
negative reputation, or claiming that anyone who describes its 
reputation is spreading FUD, is not only pointless but also counter 
productive. If you want to say "well, that may be what you've heard, 
but I've used ReiserFS on several large, heavily-used, 
mission-critical systems for several years and have not had any 
problems", then that would be a useful and important statement. You'd 
even be helping ReiserFS's reputation. But by having such a knee-jerk 
reaction to the fact that it's got a negative reputation, you're 
making the filesystem seem like it's used largely by proselytizers and 
zealots---which is not a good way to build ReiserFS's reputation.

> I've heard plenty of horror stories about ext2/ext3, xfs, etc ALL 
> losing data...

Of course - any filesystem can loose data in bad situations (such as 
power loss, bad disks, etc.). Ext3 is certainly not perfect for all 
situations. For example, it's a bad idea on flash media because it 
keeps its journal file in a fixed spot on the drive, which can wear 
out that part of a flash drive quickly. The real question is: what are 
the reputations of those filesystems, and why? Ext2/3 have been around 
for a very long time, and are extremely well-tested by virtue of their 
popularity, and as such tend to be more trusted for mission-critical 
systems (unless there's a reason they shouldn't be used).

> The fact is, I've been using reiserfs on numerous boxes for many 
> years with ZERO problems.

Excellent! What kind of systems are we talking about? How heavily 
loaded? Did you use it with LVM? Did you ever have to use the recovery 
tools? How well did they work?

The next best thing to solving a problem is finding some humor in it.
                                                      -- Frank A. Clark
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